Author: Erick Huerta

Words from SCOPE Alumni: Deepak Pateriya, Chief of Staff at the Center for Community Change

“If we’re going to achieve real economic justice in this country, there needs to be a profound shift in our general political consciousness, and we have to start by dismantling certain myths,” says Deepak Pateriya. “People are not poor because they are lazy. And Capitalism is not the natural state of things. There are other

Continue Reading

MediCAL Offers Californians New Health Benefits, and SCOPE is Spreading the Word

Since the beginning of the year, there has been a record number of enrollment applications submitted for MediCAL, California’s state-support health insurance assistance program. This is no accident: When the Affordable Care Act (ACA) took effect last October, a few key changes in the program occurred, and activists, organizers, healthcare counselors, and other county workers,

Continue Reading

Reforming Education in South LA: We Can Do It!

In the past 15 years, South LA’s families and have worked hard to overcome deficiencies in the Los Angeles Unified District 1 school system—deficiencies that have resulted in overcrowded schools, low matriculation rates, and poor college attendance. June’s Los Angeles Unified School District 1 school board election provided us with an historic opportunity to reshape

Continue Reading

Celeste Godinez

Celeste Godinez At age 15, Celeste Godinez spent her weekends at the Long Beach Port watching the boats dock and the diesel big-rigs pull away leaving thick trails of exhaust behind them. Located in the Los Angeles Basin, the large shipping yard yields some of the worst pollution in the nation, with thousands of area residents facing serious

Continue Reading

Pushing Back Against Wage Theft

For many low-income workers, securing a decent hourly wage is the holy grail. Unfortunately, collecting on that promised wage all too often becomes a battle they are forced to fight alone, usually with no hope of recovering the lost pay. Last month, two members of City Council, Paul Koretz and Gil Cedillo, along with the

Continue Reading

"Renters Make LA Work. It's Time to Make LA Work for Renters."

“Renters Make LA Work. It’s Time to Make LA Work for Renters.” Within a day after Mayor Eric Garcetti presented  his plans for revitalizing Los Angeles during his first term, media coverage of affordable housing issues—a topic conspicuously left out of his agenda—spread across news outlets. “Californians can’t afford their rents,” read the first line

Continue Reading

What's Missing From the Mayor's Agenda?

What’s Missing From the Mayor’s Agenda? On April 10, Mayor Eric Garcetti delivered his first State of the City address at the California Science Center, which focused on defining his “back to basics” agenda in Los Angeles. This is a talking point he’s used since before taking office last year—a phrase that suggests a strong

Continue Reading

Restoring Equity to the City Budget

Restoring Equity to the City Budget With two weeks to go before Mayor Eric Garcetti releases his proposed city budget for the next fiscal year, community members and representatives of nearly 18 Los Angeles organizations gathered on the steps of City Hall on March 21 to voice their concerns about the sluggish economy, and to

Continue Reading